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10 of the Best, Most Charming Bookstores in the World

Updated: Oct 16, 2021

Have you ever visited a bookstore that was so cozy and comforting that you never wanted to leave? Check out the list of magical, charming bookstores. Some of the most beautiful bookstores in the world. You'll find everything from a sprawling, grand bookstore located in a former theater to a folksy bookstore run by a cat boss in Hawaii.

These are in random order because picking a favorite would just be wrong. Tell us which one you'd like to visit most in the comments below!

coolest bookstores in the world

Octavia’s Bookshop

Gloucestershire, England

When you think of a magical bookshop, you probably think of something just like this... It could be straight out of a Harry Potter novel!

Octavia's Bookshop's iconic purple facade is so magical and cozy that you may recognize it from Pinterest or Instagram! They are self described as "an independent, nostalgic, magical bookshop that specialises in children’s books and great recommendations." Their mascot is a cute little hippo.

Octavia's Bookshop | Most Beautiful Bookstores in the World

Octavia's Bookshop Inside | Beautiful Bookshops

Visit them online:


The Last Bookstore

Los Angeles, CA

Located in a one-hundred-year-old bank building, The Last Bookstore has large, vaulted ceilings and books as far as the eye can see. They’re the largest new and used bookstore in California. Aside from the books (I know, blasphemy!) they also have a record store, comic book store, 5 art studios, an epic yarn shop, a famous book tunnel, a mammoth head, and unexpected nooks and crannies of oddities. They also claim one of their bank vaults is haunted.

The Last Bookstore | Most Beautiful Bookstores in the World

Photo Credit: Lex Voight

The Last Bookstore | Coolest Bookstores in the USA

Photo Credit: @cloud_symmetry

Visit them online:


Sweet Pickle Books

New York, NY

I had to include this place because it's just oozing millennial vibes. Please forgive me Gen Z. This oddball hole-in-the-wall bookstore sells pickles, which they claim are incredibly good. (Until we visit, the jury is out on the pickles.) They've also got a delightfully retro store window with gold lettering, a glass window with somewhat creepy dolls and an old television set.

While scrolling their Instagram, I was awash in the feels of the 90s and 00s with throwbacks from Matilda, All That, Sex and the City, and The Simpsons--all cleverly woven in with their bookish theme.

Sweet Pickles Books | Quirkiest Bookstores

Photo Credit: Instagram: @oonaro_

Visit them online:


Shakespeare & Company

Paris, France

“I created this bookstore like a man would write a novel, building each room like a chapter, and I like people to open the door the way they open a book, a book that leads into a magic world in their imaginations.” —George Whitman

Shakespeare & Company is an English language bookstore located right across from Notre Dame Cathedral.

Shakespeare and Company | Most Beautiful Bookstores in the World

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El Ateneo Grand Splendid

Buenos Aires, Argentina

One of the most beautiful bookstores in the world! With over one million visitors a year! Et Ateneo Grand Splendid is inside of an ornate former theatre.

Photo Credit: Roberto Fiadone

Photo Credit: Above and Below, Liam Quinn

Visit them online:


Sundog Books

Seaside, Florida

When most people think bookstores, they think of dim lighting, the smell of old pages, and plush couches. Think again! Sundog Books is #beachread vibes and totally worth the visit. They're a family-owned, indie bookstore that has been in business for 30+ years! Check out these amazing photos below.

Sundog Books | Coolest Bookstores in the World

Photo Credit: @nicki.festervad.parks

Visit them online:


Boulder Book Store

Boulder, CO

Nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Boulder Book Store is the largest independent bookstore in the area and Publishers Weekly Bookstore of the Year for 2018!

Boulder Book Store | Beautiful Bookshops

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Talk Story Bookstore

Hanapepe, Kauai, Hawaii🌺

Aloha! Meet Talk Story Bookstore, the Westernmost bookstore in the United States. Talk Story hosts variety of new books, used books, out of print books, comic books, vinyl records, vintage books, rare + collectables, and even vintage video games!

I would be remiss to mention Talk Story’s infamous cat boss, Celeste. Pictured below at her perch, where she oversees all book sales. Don’t worry…she has an Instagram. And yes, we’re already following her. lol

Talk Story Bookstore | Unusual & Quirky Bookstores

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Book Mill

Montague, MA

Ready to lounge with a book while overlooking the river?